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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session


Posted: December 2, 2022 12:39 PM
From: Representative Craig Williams
To: All House members
Subject: Uniform Deployed Parents Custody and Visitation Act (Former HB2287)
In the near future, I will be reintroducing the Uniform Deployed Parents Custody and Visitation Act, which will update our laws surrounding the custody and visitation rights of deployed military parents. 

Leaving one’s family to serve others is difficult enough. In some instances that deployment has been used against servicemembers for child-custody determinations.  Should a former spouse leave the state in the middle of a military deployment, regaining fair custody or even visitation can be a nightmare for a deployed parent.

This law will prevent any permanent custody changes while a servicemember is deployed for longer than 30 days.  It will also ensure that visitation rights are protected during the deployment.  Scheduled video calls and phone calls will be part of any temporary custody order, so our deployed military parents are able to see and hear their children.  This legislation is necessary to ensure the parental rights of our fighting men and women are safeguarded while they are keeping us safe. 

While many states have passed laws that address some aspects of these difficult situations, 15 states have adopted this specific language.  This legislation was developed in cooperation with the United States Department of Defense and is supported by the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Family Law Section.  Last session this bill passed the judiciary committee, appropriations committee, and the full chamber unanimously at every stage.  Thank you for your consideration.

Introduced as HB82